The defending champs appear to be a little more vulnerable than many people ever expected they would be as we head into the 2018 NBA Playoffs.
The biggest reason is that their two-time NBA MVP and the player around which their all-time great offensive system is built is currently out with a Grade 2 MCL sprain suffered against the Hawks on Friday night. He will be reevaluated in three weeks.
Stephen Curry injury update: pic.twitter.com/Me2a0bARjk
— Warriors PR (@WarriorsPR) March 24, 2018
That time frame would mean that team doctors would reevaluate him on the 1st day of the NBA postseason, Saturday, April 14.
Head Coach Steve Kerr doesn’t think there is any chance Curry comes back that soon.
This is what he told NBC Sports Bay Area:
“There’s no way he’s playing he’s playing in the first round. There’s no way, We’ve got to be ready to play without him and then see how he’s coming along.”
Although Kevin Durant is their best player, Curry is the most important player to the Warriors success on the offensive end and enables them to have the space to be the most dangerous offensive team in NBA history potentially.
The Warriors are 14 points per 100 possessions better with Curry on the floor on offense.
Even with Curry on the court, he may not be the offensive force that he typically is as he wasn’t when he returned after suffering an MCL sprain in the 1st round of the 2016 NBA Playoffs and returning in Round 2. Curry looked hesitant and unable to get to the rim when he returned from the injury, which hampered the Warriors at times in their NBA Finals loss to the Cavaliers.
The Warriors are locked into the No. 2 seed and the only scenario which could insert real fear into them in the 1st round would be a 7th seeded Spurs team with Kawhi Leonard playing which feels unlikely.